Monday, April 26, 2010
Meat-Free Monday suggestion: Cream of Broccoli soup
When it is coupled with toasted bread I am happy.
When we make it all from scratch with no preservatives I am especially happy!
On this particular day, I wanted a creamy soup. All we had in our pantry was one package of Ramen noodles. (It's the last one and once it's gone I doubt I'll ever buy it again.) My husband had made tortilla soup before, and I've made corn soup before, but those didn't really seem to satisfy my craving for a creamy soup.
So, we pulled out the trusty Better Homes and Gardens cookbook, and flipped to the Soups & Stews tab. In my 1989 version, there is a Cream of Vegetable Soup, followed by a chart. You choose which vegetable you want and the chart shows the seasonings to use with that particular veggie. The veggie choices range from broccoli to celery to acorn squash and pumpkin, carrots and mushroom, and even spinach. We had frozen broccoli on hand, so that's what we went with.
One 10-ounce package frozen cut broccoli
1 and 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 tablespoon margarine or butter
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon snipped thyme or 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk or light cream
Thaw the frozen broccoli. In a blender container or food processor combine the cooked vegetable and 3/4 cup of the chicken broth. Cover and blend or process about 1 minute or till smooth. Set aside.
In a medium saucepan melt margarine (or butter). Stir in flour, thyme, salt and pepper. Add milk all at once. Cook and stir till slightly thickened and bubbly. Cook 1 minute more. Stir in broccoli mixture and remaining broth. Cook and stir till heated through. If necessary, stir in additional milk to make of desired consistency. Season to taste. Makes 3 or 4 side-dish servings (or 2 main dish servings).
It really was very easy to put together, and once it was done, it was delicious. My creamy soup craving was satisfied. I had made sourdough bread over the weekend, and we toasted a few slices to accompany the soup. That was extra yummy! (I probably should post another entry about baking sourdough bread. I have gotten much better at it, and it is my favorite bread to make. I think I just need to remember to take pictures of it before it is devoured! Hmmm. . . some time soon.)
Anyway, I was truly thrilled with this broccoli soup and sourdough bread because it was all home made. No preservatives, no chemical additives. And, it was meat-free! I know we used chicken broth and milk, so it wasn't vegan, but, it was still meat-free. What's not to feel good about?